Najae Brown's 79-yard interception return helps CCSU beat Penn

Penn Athletics

Najae Brown's 79-yard interception return helps CCSU beat Penn


NEW BRITAIN, Conn. -- Najae Brown returned an interception 79 yards for a touchdown and Central Connecticut scored five more on offense to defeat Penn 42-21 on Saturday.

The Blue Devils (3-3) rolled up 473 yards of total offense -- Jake Dolegala passed for 179 yards and scrambled for another 15 and a touchdown. Dolegala also found Drew Jean-Guillaume for a 7-yard touchdown pass before halftime. Central Connecticut rushed for 294 yards on 53 carries and four scores. Jean-Guillame opened the game with a TD run from the 14, Courtney Rush and Cameron Nash had scoring runs of 8 and 1 yards, respectively.

Brown picked off Nick Robinson and returned it 79 yards to give the Blue Devils an early 21-0 lead.

Penn came back on three Robinson touchdown passes -- to Christian Pearson and a pair to Justin Watson to pull within 28-21 with 18 seconds left in the first half. The Quakers (2-2) didn't score after halftime.

Penn rides hot three-point shooting to easy win over CCSU

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Penn rides hot three-point shooting to easy win over CCSU


NEW BRITAIN, Conn. -- Caleb Wood scored a career-high 25 points on 7-for-10 3-point shooting and Matt Howard finished with 21 on 8-for-10 shooting to lead Pennsylvania past Central Connecticut State 87-65 on Tuesday night.

Penn led 35-29 at halftime and opened the second half outscoring the Blue Devils 17-7. Wood hit a 3 with 15:04 to give the Quakers 52-36 lead that was never challenged.

Darnell Foreman later made a 3 and the lead mushroomed to 70-48.

The Quakers hit 14 of 31 from long range and shot 50 percent from the field.

With the score tied at 15 in the first half, Penn (1-1) used an 11-0 run collecting 3s from Jackson Donahue and Wood along the way.

Austin Nehls led Central Connecticut State (1-2) with 17 points and Khalen Cumberlander added 14. Tidell Pierre scored all 9 of his points from the free throw line on 11 attempts and collected 10 rebounds.

Penn vs. Central Connecticut State: Building momentum against unfamiliar foe


Penn vs. Central Connecticut State: Building momentum against unfamiliar foe

Penn (1-2, 1-0 Ivy) vs. Central Connecticut State (1-3, 0-1 NEC)
Franklin Field, Philadelphia 
Saturday, 1 p.m.

Fresh off a great win to open Ivy League play, Penn plays its final non-conference game of the season against an unfamiliar foe. Here’s a look at the matchup:

Scouting Penn
The Quakers bounced back from two straight non-league losses to start the season with a convincing 37-24 victory over Dartmouth, one of the teams they shared the Ivy title with last year. Led by the electric trio of quarterback Alek Torgersen, wide receiver Justin Watson and running back Tre Solomon, Penn finished with 207 rushing yards and 188 passing yards while scoring on its first four possessions. The Quakers also made some big plays on defense but still rank seventh in the Ivies in total defense (466.3 ypg) and scoring defense (34.7 ppg).

Scouting Central Connecticut State
The Blue Devils have beaten Bowie State and lost to Lafayette, James Madison and Bryant. In their 45-25 loss to Bryant two weeks ago — they had a bye last week — they fell behind 28-3 at halftime after giving up TDs on four of Bryant’s first five possessions. Jacob Dolegala had a good game at quarterback, completing a career-high 31 passes (on 51 attempts) for 264 yards and two touchdowns. Cameron Nash, a preseason first-team all-conference running back, finished with 68 yards on 10 carries, which is right around his season average. The Blue Devils’ defense ranks last in the Northeast Conference, allowing 40 points per game. 

Series history
This is the first-ever meeting between the two programs.

Storyline to watch
Central Connecticut State has surrendered more than 300 passing yards per game, by far the worst mark in its conference. An experienced quarterback like Torgersen should be able to take advantage of that, as should a dominant receiver like Watson. But it will be interesting to see if other receivers can get involved and gain confidence heading into the bulk of the conference schedule.

What’s at stake
Truthfully, there’s not a whole lot at stake for the Quakers since Ivy teams aren’t eligible for the playoffs and thus don’t need to boost their non-conference résumé. The biggest thing is staying healthy and ironing out some kinks as they look to resume their Ivy title quest the following week — and, perhaps, treating the home fans to a show.

Look for the Quakers to make it two in a row.

Penn 35, Central Connecticut State 17